I got to draft out of the fifth spot in the industry PPR mock draft hosted by thefantasyfix.com. Here’s the team I drafted with some comments on the picks.
1. Maurice Jones-Drew – MJD was a logical first pick for my team. Foster, Rice and Calvin Johnson all went before my pick. It would be hard to pass up the player who is the main source of offense for his team. He also led the league in rushing yards last year too.
2. Roddy White – I felt Roddy was right for my team since he recorded consecutive 100-catch seasons the last two years. White looks to be a part of an Atlanta offense that should be airing it out in 2012.
3. Rob Gronkowski – I had the choice to make between Jimmy Graham and the Gronk. I knew if I didn’t get one of them, they’d both be gone by the time it got back to me in round 4. I picked the Gronk since he has more stability in his quarterback situation at the time I drafted. And 18 touchdowns also help make that decision easy.
4. Eli Manning – I felt I had a stable core built and needed a QB. Stafford went off the board one pick before me so I settled for the two-time Super Bowl champion. Manning stood out for me with his receiving corps (Nicks, Cruz, Randle) and the fact that the Giants were dead last in rushing last season.
5. Antonio Brown – Brown has been regarded by some as a top-10 PPR pick. I didn’t see him that far up but couldn’t let him slip by me in the fifth round. Brown has amazing speed and was the first player in NFL history with 1,000 receiving and return yards in the same season. Add to that the contract impasse with Mike Wallace and Brown could be an even better pick.
6. Beanie Wells – Wells led the Cardinals with 1,057 yards on 245 carries and 10 touchdowns in 2011. There is uncertainty with who will be quarterbacking the Cardinals in 2012. The receiving group should be able to pull defenders away from the box and give Wells room to roam. I don’t expect many passes to go his way but he should be carrying the rock quite often and get the goal line carries.
7. BenJarvus Green-Ellis – “The Law Firm,” as we’ve come to know him, is now a Bengal and is with a team that has a bigger emphasis on the running game. We saw how well Andy Dalton and AJ Green hooked up last year so this should open holes for BJGE. I don’t expect many receptions for him but he is another unquestioned goal-line back. I think he’ll be close to the same numbers he put up last season.
8. Lance Moore – Now that I had three RBs and two WRs, I put my focus back on WRs. Moore was the best of a dicey group of wideouts that was left by the middle of the draft. Moore has been known to have big games out of the blue and I felt he was less of a risk to take on the Saints and their state of affairs.
9. Nate Washington – Washington stepped into the #1 role after Kenny Britt damaged knee ligaments in September 2011. Add to that the off-field issues Britt has and Washington could be a sneaky pick for great depth. He finished with more than 1,000 yards last season and performed well whether Jake Locker or Matt Hasselbeck was under center for the Titans.
10. Anquan Boldin – I’ve always like Boldin’s toughness and he has the skills to be a Pro Bowl receiver. He just doesn’t have the quarterback in Joe Flacco. Boldin averaged more than 15 yards per catch in 2011 but only found the end zone three times. Torrey Smith went a few rounds earlier but I felt I got the better player.
11. Nate Burleson – Burleson had 73 catches last season for the Lions and more than 700 yards. Detroit threw for more than 5000 yards last season and had a bumbling running game. Although Titus Young might take some of those catches away, Burleson looks like a strong value in the 11th round in PPR.
12. Brandon Jacobs – This pick may be worth $3.36 but I hope that he pays off like a five-spot for my team. Jacobs should do better on a 49ers team more committed to the run than the Giants were. With Frank Gore always being at risk for an injury, Jacobs gives the 49ers a good back to fall back on. His size also makes him a threat to vulture touchdowns as well and he averages 10 receptions a year.
13. San Francisco defense – I rolled the dice and went a round early on the defense of the 49ers. The Texans went off the board a round earlier and all of the others were left. I chose San Francisco since they play in a weak division and were lights out last season and finished first against the run. Aldon’s Smith injury is of little concern.
14. Mark Sanchez – I felt I needed to have a backup quarterback and Sanchez was the best of what was left. He has the Rams on the week when Eli is on bye so that helps. Sanchez looked better than Kevin Kolb or Matt Cassel. People forget he threw for 3500 yards and 26 TDs last season.
15. Greg Zuerlein – This is definitely an obscure pick of a rookie kicker from Division II Missouri Western of the MIAA. Here’s why i took him. He hit an NCAA all-division record 21 field goals in a row last season. Of those 21, he was a perfect 9-of-9 from beyond 50 yards. He hit twice from 58 yards out as well. When you put a guy with a leg like that inside a dome on a team with a sputtering offense he will get his chances. Keep those stats in mind if you play in leagues that give bonuses for longer distance field goals.
So, what do you think of the team? Leave comments below and let us know if this team would be a PPR beast or total roadkill.